ICAI elections are up. We all Chartered Accountant members would be receiving huge number of SMS, WHATSAPP from all over. Few of us would be personally visited by candidates soliciting our “First Preference Vote”. This bombardment may make us more confused as to who is entitled to my first preference vote? A friend’s friend or a relative or a suitable person for the profession at large. Some may also have the question as to what’s the real role of this so much sought after and prestigious CENTRAL COUNCIL. I was facing similar pressure from all sides. With curiosity on who is capable to be a council member at the center, just had a look Section 15 at the Duties of Central Council as laid down by the Chartered Accountants Act 1949. Functions of Council with highlights for a quick read….
(1) The Institute shall function under the overall control, guidance and supervision of the Council and the duty of carrying out the provisions of this Act shall be vested in the Council.
(2) In particular, and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing powers, the duties of the Council shall include —
(a) to approve academic courses and their contents;
(b) the examination of candidates for enrolment and the prescribing of fees therefor;
(c) the regulation of the engagement and training of articled and audit assistants
(d) the prescribing of qualifications for entry in the Register;
(e) the recognition of foreign qualifications and training for the purposes of enrolment;
(f) the granting or refusal of certificates of practice under this Act;
(g) the maintenance and publication of a Register of persons qualified to practice as chartered accountants;
(h) the levy and collection of fees from members, examinees and other persons;
(i) subject to the orders of the appropriate authorities under the Act, the removal of names from the Register and the restoration to the Register of names which have been removed;
(j) the regulation and maintenance of the status and standard of professional qualifications of members of the Institute;
(k) the carrying out, by granting financial assistance to persons other than members of the Council or in any other manner, of research in accountancy;
(l) the maintenance of a library and publication of books and periodicals relating to accountancy;
(m) to enable functioning of the Director (Discipline), the Board of Discipline, the Disciplinary Committee and the Appellate Authority constituted under the provisions of this Act;
(n) to enable functioning of the Quality Review Board;
(o) consideration of the recommendations of the Quality Review Board made under clause (a) of section 28B and the details of action taken thereon in its annual report; and
(p) to ensure the functioning of the Institute in accordance with the provisions of this Act and in performance of other statutory duties as may be entrusted to the Institute from time to time.
Above is the extract of such duties as laid down by ICAI Act.
The above list surprised me that the COUNCIL at the CENTRE is a policy making body for the overall betterment of the accounting profession and NOT for running programmes, seminars, etc. It should rather be laying down the suitable policies for the regional councils like WIRC of ICAI to run the programs effectively for overall professional development.
Infact, the CA Regulations specifically provide that programmes are to be conducted by the Regional Councils and branches with guiding role for Central Council and its Committees. One sometimes gets the feeling that the only role left and carried out by the Central Council and its Committees is that of organising events with very little coming out in terms of policy for common members’ consumption!
The above means awareness based selection and not NO voting. Please vote – but be aware of what is the impact of your vote on the overall profession in long term.
Let’s, on this backdrop set right our priorities for posterity with judge us too.
।। य एष सुप्तेषु जाग्रति।। He who is awake amidst all the sleeping ones.